The Jury Talks Back


Unsurprising: Increased Republican Support For Trump After Incendiary Tweets

Filed under: Uncategorized — Dana @ 7:14 am

[guest post by Dana]

If you’re surprised by this, then you haven’t been paying close attention these past two years. When President Trump taps into an issue that has been simmering under the surface of his loyalist base, and then launches an attack on the focus of their frustration, it increases his popularity:

The national survey, conducted on Monday and Tuesday after Trump told the lawmakers they should “go back and help fix the totally broken and crime infested places from which they came,” showed his net approval among members of his Republican Party rose by 5 percentage points to 72%, compared with a similar poll that ran last week.

Among independents, about three out of 10 said they approved of Trump, down from four out of 10 a week ago. His net approval – the percentage who approve minus the percentage who disapprove – dropped by 2 points among Democrats in the poll.

Trump’s overall approval remained unchanged over the past week. According to the poll, 41% of the U.S. public said they approved of his performance in office, while 55% disapproved.

Comparatively speaking:

The public response to Trump’s statements appeared to be a little better for him than in 2017, after the president said there were “very fine people” on both sides of a deadly white nationalist rally in Charlottesville, Virginia.

In that instance, Trump’s net approval dropped by about 10 points a week after the Charlottesville rally.

[Ed. Base support for Trump dropped 3% after his Charlottesville comments. For those who voted for Trump in 2016, 80 percent still supported him. ]

Note: While Democrats (and some Republicans) view the president’s tweets as racist, consider this analysis of perception and interpretation:

“To Republicans, Trump is simply saying: ‘Hey, if you don’t like America, you can leave,” Hutchings said. “That is not at all controversial. If you already support Trump, then it’s very easy to interpret his comments that way.”

Given the increase in support after his comments, it’s a reasonable to believe that President Trump is “doing exactly what Republicans want him to do,” by “taking on groups that they oppose.”

Additionally, while Trump lobbied the GOP for a unified front before the Democratic-led House vote to condemn his remarks, GOP members avoided the president’s political fury by voting against the House resolution yesterday. Only four members crossed party lines to vote with the Democrats:

Two days after Trump tweeted that four Democratic freshmen should “go back” to their home countries — though all are citizens and three were born in the U.S.A. — Democrats muscled the resolution through the chamber by 240-187 over near-solid GOP opposition.

At the end of the day, President Trump is revealing his strategy for 2020, and so far, it resembles 2016:

For all the tumult and anger that President Trump’s verbal attacks on four minority lawmakers have caused, he has been clear about his political motives: Drive a wedge through the country that forces each side to its corner.

Trump is betting he can repeat the formula that won him election in 2016, widening the nation’s racial, cultural and ideological divides to eke out victory with a strong showing among older conservative white voters.


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